Where does Iman stand in the life of a believer? When you realize the purpose of this life, Iman stands first in the priority list. All worldly relationships are temporary. The only matter we will be concerned about as we breathe our last, lie in the grave, and stand on the Day of Judgement, will be our Iman.
To spend a righteous life, we need to polish, nourish, cleanse, and purify our Iman. Only after that will we be able to lead a pure life of Taqwa.
Dunya is full of temptations, but there are certain wonderful tips which can help keep our Iman fresh and everlasting. Here are some of them:
Talk to Allah (swt). Have indepth conversations with Him. When we supplicate to Allah (swt), we should follow the way of the prophets. If we ponder over the starting verses of Surah Maryam (the supplication of Prophet Zakariya (as)), we can learn the art of presenting our problems and needs in front of Allah (swt) in the most beautiful way. Prophet Zakariya (as) talked to Allah (swt), telling Him his entire situation, including the minute details. He did not hand to Allah (swt) a list of desires and needs. Instead, he talked and discussed the things because he loved Allah (swt) and had a strong relationship with Him.
Nothing proves to be more effective in growing the level of Iman than a Dua. Make Dua a positive habit, not a medicine in the days of illness.
Tahajjud does wonders to draw us closer to Allah (swt). The last third of night is the treasure time given to us by Allah (swt). He comes to the lowest level of heaven and asks if anyone wants his desires to be fulfilled. Such closeness to Allah (swt) gives a new life to our Iman.
Start practicing the Sunnah. The feeling of love for Prophet Muhammad (sa) at the time of practicing and reviving a Sunnah cannot be described in words. Eat the food Muhammad (sa) used to eat. Start your day with a glass of honey water. Eat Sunnah foods at your meals. Eat with your right hand and say ‘Bismillah’ before eating. Try the Hijamah (cupping) treatment. Treat your illnesses using remedies prescribed by the Prophet (sa). Living a life of Sunnah refreshes our faith – it is as nourishing for our Iman as water is for a plant.
Prophet Muhammad (sa) said: “Whoever revives my Sunnah loves me. And whoever loves me will be with me in Paradise.” (Tirmidhi)
Avoidance of Sins
Avoid the dirt of sins. Geebah (backbiting), lies, slander, music, obscenity, and disobedience to Allah (swt) are slow poisons that eventually kill Taqwa and Iman. Every sin puts a black dot on heart which is the house of Iman.
Abu Hurairah (rtam) reported that Allah’s Messenger (sa) said: “Verily, when the believer commits a sin, a black dot appears on his heart. If he repents, abandons the sins, and seeks forgiveness, his heart will be polished. If he increases his sins, the blackness is increased. This is the covering which Allah (swt) has mentioned in His Book – no, but on their hearts is the covering because of what they have earned.” (Ibn Majah)
Beneficial lectures, reading material, and company of righteous people nourish Iman. It reminds us of our mission and strengthens our vision. Abu Hurairah (rtam) reported that he heard the Prophet (sa) say: “A man follows his friend’s religion so be careful about who you befriend.” (Tirmidhi and Abu Dawood)
Remembrance of Death
Remembrance of death is another useful tip for preserving Iman. It keeps us steadfast in doing good deeds as an investment for the Akhirah. Remembrance of death reminds us that this life is temporary. Hence, we should prepare for the death proactively, before it arrives.
Prophet Muhammad (sa) said: “Surely the hearts rust like iron.” People inquired: “How can it be polished?” He said: “By remembering death and reciting the Quran.” (Al-Bayhaqi)